An Enemy Trick to Cause Confusion or Breakup (Hyatt)

This is an enemy trick that uses an onion as a container spell, to cause your enemy’s mind to be confused (to “run them crazy”) or to break up a couple. The informant was Miss Ida Bates of New Orleans, recorded in Vol. 2, p. 1659.

You get one dirt dauber’s nest tube and powder it. Get a red onion – you’ll need to load it with materials, so you might want to cut it in half and remove a couple of layers from the center, or cut the top off and scoop out some of the inside, though the informant does not detail the cutting or stuffing. Inside the onion you put your target name(s) — presumably on a name-paper —  and add bluestone (use laundry bluing, the anil balls or the bluing squares), cayenne pepper, and a good pinch of the dirt-dauber nest. If you want to break up a couple, put their names on separate pieces of paper and stick those in there. The informant doesn’t specify, but if you have cut the onion in half, you’ll need to stick it back together; it would be ok to use thread or string to tie it shut. If you just took the top off and scooped some inside it, then you can just set the “cap” back on top. Then, the informant says, “And [put] the onion under the dirt dauber. And just the way that wasp hums, wanders around, circles around, that’s just the way those people mind will be.” She doesn’t specify exactly how to do this, but you could put it in a box or cup and cover it with the rest of the dirt dauber nest powder, or you could bury it and cover it with the dirt dauber nest. (That’s what I would do.)

This is an enemy trick – the informant says this is for a person “you want to be evil against” — so you need to do proper spiritual cleansing after performing this trick.

on breakup work; frequently asked questions

breakup work faqs cover 600 x 900 jpgThis post is part of the Rootwork Education series that I used to maintain on livejournal and am now updating and keeping here on WordPress. Work in progress.

Q: A client asks why I won’t often do breakup cases, and why I require a consultation before considering work like that.

A: In and of itself, I don’t have a moral problem with simply the fact that the couple is married or that a client is having a relationship with a married woman or man.  The issue of breaking up couples, particularly married couples, is complex and isn’t really necessarily about “preserving the sanctity of marriage no matter what” or any naive crap like that.  It’s about the fact that relationships come in all shapes and sizes, and that sometimes breaking up a couple will cause harm that is not justified in the bigger picture.  Let me give you some examples.

I have a client come to me to break up a married couple. The client is dating a married man and he kept on promising to leave his wife and never did. I do a divination that reveals that even if the couple were to break up, the guy still wasn’t likely to marry the client he’d been dating, which was what the client wanted.  And coaxing an early breakup in a marriage that was not quite ready to break up on its own causes problems that go far beyond the emotional state of the client who’s left out in the cold.  At the end of the day, I’m looking at work that will cause a lot of emotional turmoil for a lot of people, a lot of expense for a lot of people, and will still not result in a happy client.  That’s not justified work in my book.  There are such things as less-than-perfectly-happy married couples who nevertheless desire to stay married for any number of reasons.  That couple has to be taken into account as well as the client, especially if there are children or complicated financial/extended family concerns (one spouse’s insurance or job is helping pay for the other spouse’s parent’s hospice care or something like that).

A client wants a couple broken up because he thinks the relationship is the obstacle keeping him and his love interest apart or from being in the kind of relationship he wants them to be in. But the love interest has no desire to be in the kind of relationship the client wants to be in.  Breaking up the couple would not benefit the client.

A client wants a couple broken up and the couple is bound by religious marriage vows, which are essentially oaths.  Breaking up the couple means fighting against the religious oaths the couple took to each other.  This is a bad idea.  If one member of the couple indicated they were ready to get out of the marriage and just needed some help, then that might be a mitigating factor. But if that hasn’t happened, and the two people are not ready to completely break their oaths (even though they may very well be violating aspects of that oath), then the client is fighting an uphill battle.

There are many more examples. But hopefully that gives you an idea of why I have to do a consultations for stuff like this.  A consultation will get at what the issues are and give us space and time to talk about your case.  This will enable me to make better recommendations (for instance, the best route might be to draw a new lover to the other spouse so they let go with less fight, or to provide an unhappy spouse with the financial or emotional or medical or whatever things they need to be strong enough to leave the marriage).

Edit: Be sure to read the comments for some additional tidbits, as well.

on sulphur, cayenne, and other “irritants” in hoodoo

I see this come up occasionally, and I thought I'd repost something I posted on a hoodoo list not all that long ago, in response to someone expressing curiosity over why someone would use sulphur or cayenne in a love spell.  To their way of thinking, sulphur and cayenne are part of the crossing/hexing/icky family of herbs and minerals, from which you see them make occasional forays into uncrossing and protection work, and would thus "make more sense" as part of a breakup spell rather than a love spell.

Here was my response:

I'll tell you my theory on it, which you're free to reject 🙂  Where I grew up in Cajun cooking land, you think of cayenne as an irritant first, and then think of different ways to use irritants. One way to use irritants is to heat things up – a little cayenne can be a good thing.  Think of old uses of Spanish Fly – an irritant for an aphrodisiac – or those herbal patches with capsicum in them that my Kung Fu instructor used to give us for healing.  I think of cayenne in the same category as ginger and even cinnamon (only a hell of a lot more irritating).  Then obviously irritants can be used to heat things up for less pleasurable or benevolent things as well (causing fuss and discord, running somebody crazy).

So I would think of it less like "cayenne is for breaking people up" and instead like "cayenne is for heating things up" and go from there in terms of thinking about how to use it.   Is this making sense? I think this is the same way that sulphur can be used in attracting business, even though most folks think of it as a "drive away" or "cause trouble" ingredient.  It's not always, though.  I have a bunch of recipes for business scrubs from Mobile, AL, New Orleans, and areas around and between, that call for sulphur, to raise up attention and get a good crowd at an event or sidewalk sale or barbecue, and at least one "draw a lover" recipe that calls for sulphur, cayenne, and salt.  Now, sulphur, cayenne and salt seem like a good "get the hell away from me" recipe, but at least on the Gulf Coast that same recipe has been used to get somebody to come back.  I believe the principle is that a little irritant can be used to heat things up in a good way, given the larger context of whatever other work you have going on.

an unusual use of white cat hair in a breakup spell

There are plenty of spells in the Hyatt material that prescribe colors of materials based on the race of the person you’re working on.  In honey jar work, for instance, some practitioners say to use dark honey or syrup for a dark-skinned person and light syrup for a light skinned person (think the difference between light and dark Karo syrup).  Others say to vary the color of name papers depending on the target’s skin color, along the same lines.

This spell is the only one I’ve yet encountered (that doesn’t mean they’re not out there – just means I haven’t read everything!) that varies the color of animal curios used based on the person’s skin color.  Using black cat hair for various reasons is pretty common — using WHITE cat hair for the same purposes, only for a white target, is not so common.  

This is from Hyatt Vol.2, pp.1375-6.

Yo’ git de hair from a dog an’ a cat – dat’s tuh make confusement into a home, yo’ know, make people live disagreeable an’ fight.

Yo’ takes de hair from a dog – if it’s white people, yo’ take it from a white dog; an’ if it’s colored, yo’ take it from a jet black dog wit no mixed hair. Yo’ take it from right between de two ears from de back part of de haid, right between de two ears of de dog – yo’ clip de hair from it.

Yo’ take a black cat, if it’s colored people’ an’ if it’s white people, yo’ take a white cat. An’ yo’ take it [hair] right middleways of his back, from de cat – right middleways of de cat’s back, an’ from de dog yo’ take it right from between his two ears, yo’ take dat hair.

Now, yo’ take de names of dose parties dat chew wanta make a disturbment to live disagreeable. Yo’ take dere name an’ yo’ write dere names nine times – a white person, white papah an’ red ink; a colored person, brown papah an’ black ink. Yo’ write dere names nine times crossways of each othah.

Yo’ take dat dog hair an’ dat cat hair an’ yo’ takes disturbment powder, confusement powder, war powder an’ yo’ place all dat togethah.

Yo’ place dat into a bottle. See, if it’s a colored person, see, it be’s in a brown bottle. Yo’ stop it up. Fo’ a white person yo’ put it in a white bottle.

Yo’ stop dat up an’ yo’ place all dat an’ dese names into dis bottle an’ yo’ take dat bottle an’ yo’ bury it to sunrise – to anywhere evah, yo’ buries it, in a field or in a yard or anything.

Let it be in de cornah where de sun rise. Fo’ instance, if de sun rise dataway [demonstrates], it have tuh be in dis cornah of dat place wit dat upside down – dat is, wit de mouth down in de ground.

An’ dat party will jis’ fight an’ fuss an’ fret – jis’ lak a cat an’ a dog.

coconut spells from Hyatt

I have temporary custody of a few volumes of Hyatt.  One of the things I’ve wanted to know more about was the use of coconuts in various workings.  I’ve always really liked “container” spells — bags, bottles, boxes, jars etc — and I knew there’s more work out there to do with coconuts than I’ve done. 

And now I can see that there’s even more than I suspected!  I have only ever done coconut spells for hot foot type work, doctoring them and throwing them in a river to get someone to go away.  But Hyatt records them for driving people crazy, for breaking up a couple, for keeping somebody at home — just about any use for which you could use any other type of container spell. 

But sometimes the fact that it is a coconut and not any other kind of container seems more pertinent, as for one to kill an enemy, in which it appears that the spell will cause pain in the head as the beginning of a nasty end.  The informant says that a lemon can be used for the same thing, only it works more quickly.